HC Deb 16 February 1893 vol 8 cc1557-8
MR. MARTIN (Worcester, Droitwich)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for India whether his attention has been called to the statement in The Times of January 16th that the Government of Burma have claimed and sold the exclusive right of pearl fishery in the Mergui Archipelago; and, if so, in what manner, to what distance from the coast, and under what law; whether any British subjects have been warned off, or compelled to leave these waters; and whether Her Majesty's Government intend to exclude foreign fishermen from the waters in question; and whether, seeing that the Committee of Public Accounts call the special attention of the House to the Comptroller and Auditor General's Report in the hope that the whole sub- ject may receive consideration, the Secretary of State will cause a nominal sum to be placed on the Estimates under Grant in Aid to Cyprus, to enable the said Report to be discussed in Committee of Supply, in the event of the usual Grant in Aid being unnecessary, or indicate some other method by which the suggestions as to reform of the present system of taxation in the island may be adequately considered by Parliament?


The legal question to which the hon. Member draws attention was under the consideration of the Government Law Officers in India at the end of last month. The correspondence has not vet come home, and the Secretary of State can only say that the questions raised by the Burma Local Government on the subject have not yet been decided.